The “Dolmabahçe Consensus” solution protocol, written by Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan, was announced by the state and the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) delegation in Dolmabahçe on 1 March 2015. However, the Dolmabahçe process ended in April 2015 after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan declared, “I do not recognise this consensus”.
Six years have passed and the politics of Turkey have changed dramatically since then. Peoples’ Democratic Party co-Vice President Tayyip Temel spoke to the Mesopotamia News Agency about the Dolmabahçe Consensus and what happened afterwards.
Defining the Dolmabahçe Process as an historical moment for the people of Turkey, Temel said, “The main arguments for a democratic transformation in Turkey and solutions to the conflicts are all written in that text. What needs to be done today is to return to that text”.
‘The state chose war politics over peace ‘
Temel argued that the Peace Process in Turkey was initiated by Abdullah Öcalan. “It was a very big opportunity. But the AKP — that is, the government — saw its own survival and future not in peace, but in war. That’s why they preferred war instead of peace. Erdoğan himself made that choice to continue to stay in power”.
He added, “When we look at the history of Turkey, except the 1921 Constitution, which is the product of the Constituent Assembly, the Dolmabahçe Consensus was the first time that the Kurdish people’s rights were being debated. It was very important”.
Temel also mentioned the state support for the attacks against Kobane by the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (ISIS) in 2015. “This was an important sign that state politics were going to change around the Kurdish question”, he said.
Regarding the 10 items in the Dolmabahçe Consensus he said, “Politics instead of weapons, the right to equal citizenship, the annulment of prohibitive laws, regional economic development, the regulation of the execution law, the end of the destruction of culture and ecology, the end of femicide, respect to identity and the right to a mother language — these are all real problems facing Turkey. These problems were could be solved if the process and negotiations did not stop”.
Temel concluded, “What needs to be done today for the future of Turkey is to return to the Consensus”.